Archive for the 'Design Ideas' Category

435-square-foot apartment feels airy and spacious

I’m enthralled with this 435-square-foot apartment in Greenwich Village, N.Y. It has only one window, in the living room, yet the space feels light and open. What you see here is the living room from each end, with the kitchen on one side, and the bedroom on the other side through glass doors. (Click photo [...]

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Hot or Not Hot? Giant wall stencils

The New York Times had a pretty good concept for a series: Remake five rooms around the city for $300 each. In these times of job losses and declining prosperity, $300 is still a lot of money but not too much. In a living room on Long Island, $250 of the budget was eaten up [...]

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If I had this room, I might never get up off the couch

Is it just me, or is this the most luscious, comfy, can't-possibly-leave-it TV room you've ever seen? If I had this room, I might never get up off the couch. Anyone who wanted to see me would have to come over. No meeting at Starbucks. I'd have my feet up on that hide-covered coffee table [...]

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Hot or Not Hot? The blue-green tile kitchen

Me? I LOVE this kitchen. I can feel it in my bones. Maybe it's the $10,000 (or more) worth of earthy tile that gets my attention. The stove is freakishly small for the space, and I don't see why it couldn't be as wide as the blue tile section. I found this kitchen and several others [...]

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Fun with IKEA’s $40 Varde wall shelf

IKEA sells a pretty nice $40 Varde wall shelf unit. But actually, it’s a little bland. A couple of designers from Los Angeles offer some variations in the L.A. Times. Above you see 1) the original in the center, 2) a metal grate and chain treatment on the left, and 3) the shelf embellished with [...]

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Design challenge: A bigger laundry room or a new bathroom?

Andrew C., a reader from Crofton, Md., needs our advice on whether to add a bathroom to some extra space on his ground floor, or to enlarge his cramped laundry room. (See the miserable laundry room here and here.) A little background: Andrew bought his three-story townhouse a year ago and plans to live there [...]

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Miranda Hobbes, I knew ye not

Did I not watch "Sex and the City" reruns for the past four years? Did I not come to feel in some TV-induced mania that I knew Carrie, Miranda, Samantha and Charlotte? Did I not notice who they were and how they would decorate their homes? So how in the world did attorney Miranda Hobbes’ [...]

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Alternative to a massive stove hood

Here’s an unusual design in a Los Feliz kitchen. Instead of a massive stainless-steel or stucco-looking stove hood over the gigantic range and built-in grill, these homeowners opted for a fan hidden behind faux cabinets. Plus, there are some pot hangers tucked in there as well. I’m not sure I would do this, but I [...]

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Dwell on Design conference June 5 to 8

If you want to stretch your design vocabulary, you might consider attending the Dwell on Design conference this week at the Los Angeles Convention Center. Put on by the San Francisco-based Dwell magazine folks, the seminar descriptions include sentences like this: "Not all designers set out to achieve the Platonic ideal in a concept for [...]

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Ask a finish carpenter: What kind of molding for a cove ceiling?

Question: My daughter, who lives in Westchester, has a house with coved ceilings and wants to paint the rooms but is wondering if there is a crown molding that breaks up the ceiling and accommodates the rounded ceiling and corners? — Greg Answer: From Reseda licensed general contractor and author Gary M. Katz: There isn’t [...]

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Poll: Is contemporary style on the way out?

As shocking as it may seem to fans of young, hip, cool, midcentury contemporary design, this style will not be popular forever. Stick around on the planet for a few decades, and you’ll understand all too well that today’s "modern" is tomorrow’s "hopelessly dated." Whenever I find homeowners denigrating Mexican tiles or avocado green appliances [...]

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Outdoor lighting that preserves the dark sky

If this was my house I’d be really fit, and here’s why: Every evening, I’d walk back and forth, from street to front door, over and over again, just to enjoy the sensation of this lit walkway. I’m sure this would make the folks at the International Dark Sky Association happy. After all, this is [...]

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TV budget design trick: Use exterior lighting fixtures inside

Well, why not use outdoor lanterns inside? There’s no law against it. I saw this budget design trick last night on “Designed to Sell” with Lisa LaPorta. She’s a SoCal gal, in case you didn’t know. In this particular show, Lisa wanted to punch up the sconces on either side of a vintage fireplace and [...]

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Scene from the street: What’s wrong with this picture?

Out on my daily walk around a golf course community, I watched this Craftsman house being built. I watched it being framed and plastered and sided. I watched the windows go in and the roof go on. (This is the back of the house, the angle I see from the walking path.) All the while, [...]

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Creating a flow in Mar Vista

You may not often see the words "slate" and "flow" in the same sentence. But it was by repeating the use of slate throughout her Mar Vista remodel that Janet Mitsui-Brown created a harmonious flow through her home. Above you see the slate used on, clockwise from top left, the living room fireplace, gate posts, [...]

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Virtual tour of Venice backyard retreats

If your backyard isn’t what it could be, check out the Home section’s virtual tour of Venice gardens. I’m loving this simple tea house. You can see this and other Venice homes and gardens tomorrow, Saturday, during the Venice Garden & Home Tour. Tickets cost $70. (Photo: Annie Wells / Los Angeles Times)

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Dan Gallagher finishes his mural

I’d like to think I played some small part in the fabulous success being enjoyed by Dan Gallagher, a young, hardworking and extremely courteous decorative painter from Sierra Madre. One day he’s featured in the Pardon Our Dust Blog (here, here and here), and the next thing you know, he and his work are featured [...]

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Blend your own glass tile

Do you ever feel “terminally unique?” I do. And that’s why blending my own glass tile backsplash is so appealing. Oceanside Glasstile of Carlsbad offers an online tool for mixing up the colors you like best. Here’s my favorite blend! It feels exciting to my bones. Granted, it’s not relaxing. It’s not classic. But, it’s [...]

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And now, a word about color trends

I heard some great advice about getting hip with color trends, and I’ll share that in a moment. But first, you have to get current. As David A. Keeps reported in this newspaper’s Home section, here’s the deal: "Orange and red aren’t quite dead, but the trendiest hues — purple, green, silver, even pale magenta [...]

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Design Challenge: Will black Mission-style tables go with this couch?

Your fellow home enthusiast Kyla has a design dilemma and needs your help. She’s in love with this two-tone couch and ottoman with dark leather on the bottom and milk chocolate microfiber cushions. She’s also quite enamored with black Mission-style tables. And she writes: Will these two looks be good together or will the black [...]

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